Let’s take a look at the top 4 seeds along with a preview of this year’s Section 9 Division 2 Championships. The tournament takes place this Sunday February 16 at SUNY Ulster.
1. Trevor Tufano (Port Jervis)
2. Anthony Theodore (Port Jervis)
3. Isaiah Hockx (Saugerties)
4. Thomas Shields (Onteora)
Tufano is the defending champ at this weight and he’s the heavy favorite to repeat. The PJ sophomore is 26-7 and made it to Day 2 at this year’s ESC. His finals opponent could be his teammate Anthony Theodore who is in 7th grade! Hockx and Shields are going to battle here but Eldred’s Kaitlyn Potter is 8-2 and definitely has a shot to place!
1. Ryan Kirker (Red Hook)
2. Brandon McKay (Red Hook)
3. Alyssa Reed (Port Jervis)
4. Quintin Herzog (E/L/SW)
Kirker is having a very solid season and is the favorite here. His toughest competition will likely come from his teammate McKay who was a Section 9 finalist last season but we definitely can’t look past Alyssa Reed from Port Jervis who is dangerous!
1. Ryan Ross (Port Jervis)
2. Peter Bender (Highland)
3. Lucas Ospina (Rondout Valley)
4. Robert Drost (Saugerties)
This is a great weight class with 4 legitimate title contenders in Ospina, Drost, Ross, and Bender. Ross beat Bender 5-4 last week in a dual however neither have faced Drost who is having a great inaugural season in D2. Ospina is very tough and will make noise here too!
1. Joey Curreri (Eldred/Liberty/Sullivan West)
2. Maddox McCormick (Port Jervis)
3. Chris Gatto (Highland)
4. Brenon Thiel (Onteora)
Curreri is the heavy favorite here but the PJ 7th grader Maddox is scrappy. Gatto and Thiel can’t be overlooked either…could be a good weight to follow!
1. Matt Morris (Red Hook)
2. Caleb Harrison (Port Jervis)
3. Cole Nelson (Red Hook)
4. Wyatt Konjas (Onteora)
Morris finished 6th in NYS last year and is the heavy favorite to win the Section 9 title at 126 this year. He’s a hard nosed wrestler who can hand with the best wrestlers in NYS from either division. Don’t be surprised if you see him on the medal stand once again in Albany. PJ junior Harrison is tough though and could push Morris if they meet in the finals.
1. Joey Amato (Port Jervis)
2. John Antonelli (Marlboro)
3. Gage Belnap (Saugerties)
4. Mark Bruckenstein (Chester)
Amato from Port Jervis is having a great year and has proved he can wrestle with anyone in S9 D1 or D2. Antonelli is one of the hardest working wrestlers in Section 9. He has placed in the top 3 in this tournament for 4 consecutive years and is primed to make his first trip to Albany. Antonelli is a “shadow” wrestler – he is the only Marlboro wrestler so he shadows the Highland team and wrestles far fewer matches than most high school wrestlers. Antonelli is the only “shadow” wrestler in Section 9 history to win over 100 career matches. This could be the best final of the night if the seeds hold up!
1. Alex Lopez (Red Hook)
2. Sam Buono (Onteora)
3. Walter Evans (Ellenville)
4. Crew Belnap (Saugerties)
Lopez placed 3rd in last year’s tournament and he’s the favorite here. He’s 24-6 and looking for his first trip to Albany! Buono is only a junior and at 20-7 will definitely provide a great test for Lopez if they meet in the finals!
1. Logan Zehr (Highland)
2. Logan Zappolo (Port Jervis)
3. Tyler Benincasa (Red Hook)
4. Jacobus Hockx (Saugerties)
Only a 10th grader, Zehr has earned the top seed and is the favorite here. Zappolo is scrappy and Beneicasa is very dangerous and can pin anyone at any time. This will be a fun weight class to watch unfold!
1. Nick Ross (Onteora)
2. DJ Perrin (Port Jervis)
3. Logan Smith (Highland)
4. Owen Allison (Onteora)
Nick finished 3rd in NYS last year and is one of the favorites to win the state title this year. He is the clear favorite to win S9 D2 at 152. A good match to follow will be the Perrin vs smith semifinal if the seeds hold up… Smith is 26-12 and only a sophomore!
1. Bryce Horner (Port Jervis)
2. Pat Ross (Onteora)
3. Nick Dicurcio (Chester)
4. Luke Oefelein (Fallsburg/Tri-Valley)
Pat Ross is having a monster year which includes a 32-3 record and a 6th place finish at the ESC but he’s the #2 seed behind returning champ Horner. This will be one of the marquee match-ups of the night!
1. Nate Ross (Onteora)
2. Kwalin Gonzalez (Chester)
3. Maverick Sanchez (Red Hook)
4. Matt Martinelli (Burke)
Nate Ross is without question the biggest favorite to win his weight class – either division! Nate is finished 5th in NYS last year and is looking to ascend to the top step of the podium in Albany this year! No disrespect to his opponents but Ross is on a different level and is laser focused on a state title!
1. Graeme Knissel (Saugerties)
2. Aiden Maduro (Highland)
3. Henry Peters (E/L/SW)
4. Hayden Campolong (Red Hook)
This is arguably the deepest weight class in the tournament. Knissel is a talented wrestler. If he gets hot at the right time he can win his first S9 title and possibly make the podium in Albany. Maduro and Peters are going to have a great semifinal match if seeds hold and Campolong will be tested in his quarterfinal match by 5th seed Brendan Douthit from Burke! This is an excellent weight!
1. Christopher Clark (Red Hook)
2. Hunter Roberts (E/L/SW)
3. Teddy Szymansky (Chester)
4. Connor Boyer (James I.O’Neil)
195 is another very deep weight in S9 D2! Top seed Clark is a legit contender but he’ll get pushed in his semi against the winner of #4 Boyer and #5 seed Ben Swart from Highland! Boyer is a shadow wrestler – he is the only JIO wrestler but he gets matches by shadowing another team (Newburgh Free Academy). He has a 19-4 record this season. Roberts and Szymansky are both having great years and will also provide a great semi!
1. James Oosterom (Port Jervis)
2. Jacob Southard (Port Jervis)
3. Francisco Miguel (E/L/SW)
4. Dylan Bullock (Chester)
Oosterom placed 5th in NYS last year and he’s having an awesome 2019-2020 campaign. He is the heavy favorite to win his 2nd S9 D2 title and is hoping for a spot near the top of the medal stand in Albany in a few weeks! Southard, Miguel, Bullock, and #5 seed Bucci are all tough and will battle it out for medal stand positions!
1. Devin McGovern (Chester)
2. Jon Perez (Highland)
3. Shamar Gittens (Highland)
4. Christian Kuster (Rondout Valley)
With a few legitimate contenders to take home the title, 285 will be a great weight class to follow at this year’s D2 tournament. McGovern, Perez, and Gittens all placed at last year’s tournament but Kuster may be the dark horse here and surprise the field! His record is only 5-2 but he has wins over D1 wrestlers French (major dec 11-1) and Fackler (wbf :19)…and his only 2 losses are by injury default.